An investment of $4 million in eight solar startups that are revolutionizing household solar power across Africa has been announced by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
The startups invested in are:
- Greenlight Planet (Nigeria, Uganda).
- d.light (Kenya).
- Orb Energy (Kenya).
- Fenix (Zambia).
- VITALITE (Zambia).
- PEG Africa (Ghana).
- Shinbone Labs (Benin, Ghana).
- Village Energy (Uganda).
The proposed funds will be used by the selected startups to expand their home solar power solutions to existing and new African markets, improve payment and distribution processes, and reduce operational cost thereby reducing the price of the end product to the consumers.
The investment was made through the through Scaling Off-Grid Energy: Grand Challenge for Development, a $36 million initiative launched by Power Africa, USAID and a host of other companies.
The new awards will enable recipients to expand home solar power solutions to existing and new African markets, improve payment and distribution processes, and bring down costs for customers thereby empowering entrepreneurs and investors to achieve 20 million connections by 2030.
Andrew M. Herscowitz, Power Africa Coordinator said:
The Enterprise Awards are expected to create up to 120,000 additional connections in off-grid communities. The Grand Challenge for Development is designed to support innovators like these eight companies who are scaling up their inventions,”The options for powering your home and business are changing, and these types of innovations will create opportunities to transform the power sector in homes across the planet.
The investment was announced in Morocco by Andrew Herscowitz at the 22nd session of the UN Climate conference (COP 22).
In addition, the previously announced Global LEAP Awards Off-Grid Refrigerator Competition was launched with a prize purse of $600,000.